Friends are the greatest blessings in life

Published 1:19 pm Thursday, August 3, 2017

Friends are the greatest blessings in life

by Billy Holland

Have you ever been talking with someone and as they ask how you are, they instantly move on to another subject before you hardly have a chance to answer?

Email newsletter signup

I believe that true friends ask about us out of sincerity and are really interested in what is going on in our life. We accept that we will not be best friends with everyone, and no doubt that most of our casual friends also have this same mutual feeling about us. Those who are happy when we are on the mountain and cry when we are going through a dark valley can be placed on our short list of individuals who love and care about us. Donna Roberts is quoted as saying, “A true friend knows the song in my heart and sings it to me when my memory fails.”

The story of Jesus praying in the garden of Gethsemane just before he was to be crucified, allows us to see a brief moment of His human side, and how He really wanted the spiritual and emotional support of His friends as He was going through a very difficult time. Within this mental image, we can know that God definitely understands about loneliness and the value of having someone walk with us in our journey. Jesus knew that His time was near and He asked three of His closest friends to accompany Him to this quiet place where He could spend some time praying to His Heavenly Father. When they arrived. He asked them to stay awake and pray as He was going on a little further down the path. As He walked away, it’s clear that He felt an overwhelming sadness and anguish as His words are recorded, “My soul is exceedingly sorrowful, even unto death: tarry ye here, and watch with Me.” You can read the account in Matthew chapter twenty-six and verses 36-56, which also includes Him falling on His face and crying; “O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from Me: nevertheless, not as I will, but as Thou wilt.”

After a while, He returns to hopefully receive some positive encouragement but instead finds them asleep.

This happens on three separate occasions and the last time He stood over them, and with compassion, said to sleep on now and take your rest.

Even though they could not hold their eyes open, it did not mean that they did not love Him because they truly did, (and by the way, I would say we would not have stayed awake either). My point is that we all want our closest friends around us when we are walking through our experiences. There is an old saying that explains how there comes a time in our life when we realize who actually matters, who never did, who is not around anymore and who will always be there.

Family and friends rejoice with us in the good times and also hold our hands when we are in the hospital, and are to be appreciated as our greatest blessings. 

Dr. Billy Holland lives in Central Kentucky with his wife Cheryl, where he is a Christian author and community outreach chaplain. Request a free copy of his new CD at